The MMA Forums around the world attract delegates, speakers and exhibitors right across the spectrum of the mobile industry and Singapore was no exception. Manufacturers, telcos and researchers rubbed shoulders with media agencies, digital directors from major consumer brands and specialists in content development. Unilever, Coca-Cola, Microsoft Advertising, Google, InMobi, Euro RSCG, Nokia, Starcom MediaVest, Qais were all represented at the show in Singapore.
It would be hard to find another industry so united under a common goal and so confident in the future of its sector.
In Singapore last week, the format of short presentations and dual tracks filled the 2 days tended to leave one breathless but there were opportunities to network. This year the MMA, and their local PR agency Rice Communications, selected the Grand Hyatt for the Singapore show.
Delegates expressed delight at the choice. It was more intimate than previous venues and the food and service was well up to the Hyatt standards.
The 260 delegates learnt about new technologies covering mobile apps, electronic billing, location-based services and so on. What emerged was summed up by Rohit Dadwal, Managing Director, APAC, Mobile Marketing Association. “The industry is moving in a different direction now. People are convinced about the potential of the medium, and now we are trying to find the best way to move forward with the consumer in mind”. He said the three take-aways from the Forum were: (1) Mobile as an engagement tool cuts across digital and traditional marketing. (2) Mobile can be used to achieve all brand goals from consumer interest to purchase and long-term loyalty. (3) Permission-based marketing with the consumers’ interest at heart is the way forward for the industry.
While we can easily become excited in Singapore and Hong Kong about mobile because of the large percentage of smartphone ownership, it should be remembered that outside these areas in Asia, most consumers are still using what is termed “feature phones”. However, this does not negate the sheer number of Asians actively using their mobile to do much more than just make a call.